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A step-by-step guide on how to set out a CV

Your Curriculum Vitae (CV) is your ticket to securing a job interview. It’s your opportunity to showcase your skills, experiences, and qualifications to potential employers. Whether you’re just starting your career, transitioning from the military, have experienced homelessness, or are a care leaver, creating an effective CV can significantly enhance your job prospects. In this step-by-step guide, we’ll walk you through the process of how to set out a CV.

How do you lay out a CV?
A well-structured, easy-to-read CV not only highlights your qualifications but also reflects your attention to detail and professionalism. A well-structured and visually appealing CV is more likely to grab the attention of hiring managers, regardless of the job role you’re applying for. In this section, we’ll delve into how to structure a CV.

Use a professional font
Stick to clear, professional fonts like Arial, Calibri, or Times New Roman. Avoid decorative fonts that can make your CV difficult to read.

Use clear headings
Organise your CV with clear and consistent headings. Use bold or larger fonts to make these headings stand out. Common section headings include:

  • Personal Information
  • Education
  • Experience
  • Skills

Space content out on the page
Avoid overcrowding your CV with text. Use white space to break up sections and make your CV visually appealing. Adequate spacing between lines and sections improves readability.

Consider the order of your CV
Organise your CV logically by placing the most important and relevant information at the top. For example, if you’re a recent graduate, your education section might come before your work experience.

Including personal credentials on your CV
Your CV’s opening section sets the tone for the entire document. It’s where you introduce yourself to potential employers and make that all-important first impression.

What personal information should I include on my CV?
When including personal information on your CV, it’s essential to strike a balance between providing relevant details and protecting your privacy. Here’s a list of personal information you should consider including when planning how to set out a CV:

  • Full Name
  • Contact Information, including:
    • Email address: Use a professional email address that includes your name (For example
    • Phone number
  • Location: You don’t need to provide your full address, but specifying your general location can be helpful
  • Optional Personal Information: Depending on your location and industry, you might choose to include additional personal details, such as your date of birth and whether you hold a valid driving licence

The skills and experience section of CV
Listing your skills and experiences showcases what makes you a valuable candidate for the job you’re applying for and how your current skills can be transferred to a new role. Key areas to consider include:

  • Employment experience: Begin by listing your previous job titles, dates of employment, company names, and locations. Under each job title, provide a brief but impactful description of your responsibilities and accomplishments.
  • Educational experience: Include your academic achievements, starting with the highest level of education first.
  • Skills: Think about both technical and soft skills to demonstrate your competence to excel as a valuable team member who can contribute positively to the organisation.
  • Training: Include any relevant training programs, certifications, or qualifications that enhance your candidacy.

Tailor Your CV to the job you’re applying for
Tailoring your CV to the specific job you’re applying for demonstrates your genuine interest in the position. It also helps your CV pass through applicant tracking systems (ATS) by matching key skills and keywords from the job listing.

While it’s essential to tailor your CV to the job, it’s equally vital to maintain honesty throughout the process. Exaggerations and false information can be discovered during interviews or background checks, potentially risking your chances of landing the job.

In summary, creating a strong CV requires careful formatting, effective presentation of your qualifications, and aligning your content with the job’s requirements. By following these steps on how to set out a CV and staying truthful in your representation, you can craft a compelling CV that significantly increases your prospects of securing your dream job.

Support with kick starting your career
At Churchill Group, we welcome individuals from diverse backgrounds, whether you’re just starting your career, an experienced professional, or an ex-military personnel with transferable skills. Exploring a career in facilities management opens up a plethora of opportunities, such as HR, account management, business support, leadership, as well as frontline roles.

We understand that transitioning to a new job can be intimidating, and creating an impressive CV is a crucial part of the process. That’s why at Churchill Group, we offer comprehensive support and will guide you every step of the way, to achieving your career goals.

Supporting you with your application
If there are any adjustments we can make to the recruitment process, please let us know. We’re happy to help, and we will provide support and guidance if you’re unsure about what is currently available.

We can offer support in making applications and making any adjustments within any stage of the recruitment process.

Get in touch
At Churchill Group, we believe that doing right by our employees is the key to our collective success. Take a look at our Work With Us page to start your empowering career journey with us in 2024.